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Tonight’s episode of The Walking Dead was intense and maybe one of the best episodes this season so far. It was an extra 13 minutes long and gave an in-depth look at the relationship that’s growing between Negan and Gabriel. But at the very end of the episode, there was something very wrong with Gabriel. What’s wrong with him?
This post will have spoilers for Season 8 Episode 5.
Throughout the episode, fans were really worried that Gabriel might not survive. Sure, it seems like Negan likely has plot armor to last him awhile, but Gabriel’s not that lucky. Even at the very end of the episode, when Negan and Gabriel finally seemed to come to terms with each other, fans were a little worried when Gabriel kneeled at his side that he might get a Lucille to the side of his head. When he didn’t and Negan told his men to “gently” take Gabriel to Number 2, it still seemed worrisome.
We found out at the end that Negan had locked Gabriel into one of those cells, like Daryl had been in, but now Gabriel’s really sick. Eugene found Gabriel shivering and shaking in the cell. He said they needed to take Gabriel to Dr. Carson, but Gabriel insisted that Dr. Carson was Maggie’s doctor and they need to get Dr. Carson out of there somehow.
So what’s wrong with Gabriel?
We don’t know for certain, but fans have some theories. First, fans think that maybe Gabriel got sick from putting all those zombie guts on him, and he’s contracted the virus. We know that everyone is already “infected” and they all turn into zombies when they die. But actually getting bitten leads a person to coming down with an infection that kills them, which leads to their reanimating as a zombie. Negan commented that because the body was so fresh (and had so recently been turned), he wasn’t sure if they might get sick from putting the guts all over themselves.
But is it likely that Gabriel’s sick? So far, Negan’s fine. And in Fear the Walking Dead, we’ve seen Nick put zombie guts all over him all the time, and from zombies of varying ages and levels of decay. It’s certainly possible that Gabriel got infected in some way that Negan didn’t, or doesn’t have an immunity that Negan has… But it seems unlikely. It seems more likely that he might have gotten scratched or bitten at some point during the battle.
There’s also the possibility that Gabriel is sick with something else entirely unrelated, and the timing is just very bad. There’s also a small possibility that Gabriel is faking because he’s decided his true purpose for being there is getting Dr. Carson free, and this is the only way he can be taken to Dr. Carson. (But Gabriel certainly didn’t seem to be faking when Eugene was looking at him in the cell.)
Right now, the theory that most fans are believing is that Gabriel got sick from the zombie guts and Negan didn’t. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.